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Deputyship solicitors

Our team is frequently instructed to act on deputyship matters. As solicitors we can be appointed as professional deputies or we can advise the person likely to look after the mentally incapacitated person's affairs, finances and all aspects of Court of Protection.

A deputy is a court appointed person appointed by the Court of Protection to manage the personal welfare or the property and affairs of another person who lacks the mental capacity to manage these for themselves. A deputy can only act under a court order from the Court of Protection. Where there is no one else who can be appointed as a deputy Stephensons Trust Corporation Limited can act as a professional deputy for persons who lack capacity.

The Court of Protection's primary role is to protect those who cannot manage their own decisions and finances in their best interest. Additionally it seeks to regulate those that are appointed to look after a vulnerable person's finances.
 
We have been carrying out Court of Protection work on behalf of vulnerable people and appointed individuals for over 30 years. We are also regularly appointed by local authorities which is testament to our skills in this field.

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We can help our clients in the following ways very much depending on individual circumstances:

  • We can assist the families and parents of those who have suffered medical negligence by making  applications to the Court of Protection to become a receiver 
  • Acting as independent professional receiver for mentally incapacitated persons 
  • Assisting non-professional receivers in their role and obligations to the court 
  • Advice and assistance with annual accounts required by the Court of Protection

If you would like further information on how we can help you, please call us on 0161 696 6238 for a no obligation initial chat with one of our advisors. We have a team of friendly and approachable advisors who are waiting to take your call. They will talk to you about your situation without using legal jargon and they will do their best to make you feel comfortable and at ease. If you don’t want to call us initially you can contact us at a time most convenient to you, anytime of the day or night, through our online enquiry form and we will get back to you as soon as we can to see if we can help.

Frequently asked questions

What is the Court of Protection?  

In order to make decisions on the behalf of a loved one or family member who is mentally incapacitated, if you do not have a Lasting Power of Attorney, you must go through the Court of Protection. Applying the Mental Capacity Act 2005, the Court of Protection supervises the personal welfare and financial decisions of those who are unable to make decisions themselves due to a mental illness or cognitive impairment.

What does the Court of Protection do?

The Court of Protection prevents a mentally incapacitated person from being taken advantage of, making sure that any decisions made are in the person’s best interests. They enforce a formalised legal process in which individuals must apply for Power of Attorney and/or a deputyship, to verify that they are the right person to take on this kind of responsibility. In addition to this, the Court of Protection can also review decisions to see whether or not they violate the rights of a vulnerable individual under the Mental Capacity Act.

How do you get approval from the Court of Protection?

In order to obtain a deputyship, you must go through the application process. There are very strict terms and requirements that need to be fulfilled, as well as evidence you will have to present to the CoP, so it is sensible to seek the advice of an experienced solicitor.

How long does it take to get approved by the Court of Protection?

Depending on the evidence that the CoP wants you to submit and the time it takes them to review your application, the approval wait can vary. However, most applications tend to be approved by the CoP within 4-6 months if all information is provided and forms are filled out to the correct standard.

What is the cost of an application to the Court of Protection?

The court fees for submitting an application to the CoP for a Deputyship can cost £385 for the application fee and an additional £494 if you are called to a hearing at the CoP. Solicitors fees for assisting will be extra.

Setting up a Lasting Power of Attorney before someone losses capacity is generally much cheaper so should be considered if someone has a concern about this. But it must be done before they lose capacity. If they have already lost capacity then a Deputyship is the route that would usually have to be adopted, with the extra costs  

How long does a Court of Protection order last and can a vulnerable individual regain control?

A CoP order only lasts as long as a vulnerable individual requires another party to make decisions on their behalf, so if they are deemed capable to make these choices then they will regain control over their affairs. Additionally, if the vulnerable individual passes away the order will be terminated as it is no longer needed.

What is the difference between an LPA and a deputy?

Whilst an LPA is appointed by a vulnerable individual prior to incapacitation to make decisions on their behalf, a deputyship is decided by the Court of Protection when an LPA has not been chosen already. There can be two types of deputy, one that controls any decisions made regarding financial assets and affairs, as well as a deputy who makes decisions to do with the vulnerable individual’s personal welfare.

What decisions can a deputy make?

The decisions a deputy can make are the deputy is something that the Court of Protection will decide.

Individuals in these roles can be in charge of either, or both, financial affairs and personal welfare, which includes the ability to:

Financial affairs:

  • Manage bank accounts
  • Buy or sell property
  • Make statutory wills or gifts

Personal welfare:

  • Medical decisions & treatment
  • Living situation
  • Care giving

Can a deputy be changed?

In some cases, there will be relatives and loved ones of the vulnerable individual who believe that an alternative deputy would be better suited to the role. This may arise as a result of disagreements or a belief that the deputy does not have the individual’s best interests at heart. If you and your family want to raise a dispute regarding the chosen deputy, then you may submit an application to the CoP to have this changed.

What is a statutory Will?

If a person lacks the mental capacity to make a will for themselves, then a statutory will can be written up and approved by the CoP on their behalf.

However, if you or your family believe that the statutory will does not properly reflect the wishes of the vulnerable individual then you can appeal to have it changed. You may also want to appeal if you believe the deputy is not acting in their best interests, or if you believe the vulnerable individual has the capacity to write their own last will and testament.

How much do our legal services cost?

At Stephenson’s, the cost of our expert legal services can vary depending on what you require of us and how many hours will need to be spent on your case. When you contact us regarding your situation, we can assess how much work will be needed and then estimate how much we think it will cost.

Visit our fixed prices page to see roughly how much we charge for different types of work, so that you can see if our Court of Protection team at Stephenson’s are right for you.

To learn more about how our specialist solicitors can help you with applications, disputes, hearings, and other related issues, call us on 0161 696 6238 or complete our online enquiry form and we will contact you directly. We have a number of locations across the country boasting a fine selection of talented Court of Protection solicitors, including Manchester, London, Warrington, St Helens, Wigan, and Bolton.

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